Teams a success – chief

Acting Superintendent Brad Royce.
Acting Superintendent Brad Royce.

The district has completed its six-month trial of the new police operating model, which will now be rolled out across the rest of the metropolitan area.

Acting Superintendent Royce has been in the role since early May and will oversee the district as the operating model becomes a permanent fixture.

He said the trial was a success and feedback was positive, and the next step would be to increase engagement across the district.

During the six-month trial, offences dropped by more than 2000 and Acting Superintendent Royce put it down to the structure and the officers performing the new roles.

‘It comes down to solving a problem before it becomes a crime,’ he said.

Officers making up the local police teams are responsible for one or two suburbs and focus on local issues, problems and engaging with the local community on a personal level.

‘The engagement of the local police teams is starting to bite now,’ he said. ‘The strategy is to provide a safer community.’

Police Commissioner Karl |O’Callaghan said the trial delivered strong outcomes across a range of indicators. ‘In just six months we’ve seen South-East Metro move from sixth to second best-performing district in the metropolitan region in relation to verified crime reporting, compared with the previous year,’ he said.

‘Crime is down, demand on policing resources is down and the district has a higher degree of control over its resources than before.

‘It’s also worth noting there has been significantly improved public satisfaction with police, with a greater emphasis on local issues.’

Acting Superintendent Royce said it was important to note that the trial was run across the most challenging time of year, from Christmas to Easter, and still had success. ‘The significant success of this trial is driving the model for the rest of the metro area,’ he said.

The next phase will begin in September when South Metro and Peel will combine to form the new South Metro district.